Update: A Mountain of Wool

In A Mountain of Wool I showed you the mountain of yarn I made in pretty colors for a special project. Well I finished that project! It came out so well! I made a bag using the Fox Paws I made a bag.

IMG_20150805_231130IMG_20150805_002642IMG_20150805_003111IMG_20150805_111739

I added straps and a pull string from icord. I am really happy with it. One day I might even line it with fabric. Sewing isn’t my favorite…

Advertisements

From Wool To Sweater

IMG_20140829_143156

Last winter was very very cold. My poor dog was pretty cold on her walks so I decided that next winter she needed a sweater. I didn’t want too nice of yarn since it is for Angel to go outside in so I found some easy to spin, unwashed wool at Mind’s Eye in Boston, MA. I got 12 oz in total and it smelled like lanolin. I spun it on my new Baynes spinning wheel.

FB_IMG_13972574237257058

White is obviously not the best color for something that will get dirty so I decided to try my hand dyeing! The first step was to soak the yarn in acidic water so I mixed some acetic acid in water and soaked the yarn overnight.

IMG_20140714_173740

The magic combination when using acid dyes is acid+dye+heat. The next step for dyeing was to heat the yarn in the acid mixture. I got a pot just for this since you should not use your food pots for dyeing.

IMG_20140714_193134

The dye comes in a powder form. I mixed it with some boiling water to pre mix it in an old pasta jar. I decided on orange because it was my first dyeing and if I messed it up I didn’t want to do it with one of my favorite colors. Also my brown dog looks really good in orange. Her collar at home is orange and as my Mom said after I showed her the sweater “Now we can walk Angel during the day in hunting season!”

IMG_20140714_193144

When the yarn was finally warm enough I added the dye to the pot! I carefully mixed it so that the dye got on all of the yarn without felting yarn. Wool felts easily when heated so it is important not to agitate it.

IMG_20140714_194427

The next step was the hardest; I had to wait for the dye to take making sure the water didn’t boil. It took forever and I was so excited for it to come out.

IMG_20140714_200249

They way you tell when the dyeing is done is that the dyeing water is clear or almost clear. You have to let the yarn and water cool on their own which with such a large amount can take a while and while it is cooling it can absorb the last bit of dye so I impatiently turned off the heat when it was mostly clear.

After the yarn cooled which took FOREVER I had to rinse it off but without agitating the wool again. After it was rinsed I had to let it dry. It took a while to dry. I had the three skeins I had dyed hanging around my room on door knobs.

IMG_20140715_015023

The next step of course was the fun part, knit with it! It wasn’t the most consistent single since it was one of the first things I spun on my wheel. I also never took the time to wash the lanolin off, which some people will say disrupts the dyeing, so it gave the yarn a kind of waxy feel to it. I wanted to try and keep the lanolin though since it is suppose to water proof the yarn a bit and since this was outside wear for a dog I liked that idea. I started knitting it on my camping trip with my family so Angel saw me working on it although she had no idea what was coming!

103_0288

I got the pattern off of ravelry here.

IMG_20140725_180040

I estimated the wool amount pretty well. I used almost all of it and thank god didn’t run out!

IMG_20140901_203832

And here is Angel wearing her new sweater!!!

When Is The Last Time I Finished Something?

I started this blog as an outlet to show mostly the many knitted and crocheted items I had been creating to people who might be interested in seeing them along with a place to show off my beautiful dog occasionally. Oh and to post pictures of food that I made too! I was hoping on only posting finished items and at the speed I was going I was sure I would have some pretty consistent posts. This year I have definitely tapered off and I realized it is because I have a zillion projects on my needles right now!

Do you guys get this problem too? You might have saw that I recently started spinning and along with that knew project and the shortest attention span in the world there is no hope of finishing a project. It might also have something to do that I have shifted to more knitting projects than crocheting ones. After Knitting Vogue I had a ton of NICE yarn that I wasn’t quite sure what to do with and told something that I had never heard before, knitting takes less yarn than crocheting! Since I learned that I was determined to knit my fancy yarns to make them last longer. I started a beautiful knit cardigan designed by Ann Weaver

IMG_20140407_141747

I got the yarn from Neighborhood Fiber CO. It is gorgeous merino hand dyed wool. I still have to finish the sleeves and sew it all up!

Another project I was working on was vest which was part of a knit along from the shop by my parent’s house. The project was the Buttonbox Vest. I think it looks really pretty and I got some nice metal buttons to put on it. I am REALLY close to finishing this one. All I need to do is to knit the border of the armholes and sew in the ends and the pockets. The reason this got put on the back burner (besides my unenthusiasm for sewing) was it used the same needles that the sweater above used.

IMG_20140319_142819

I also have a bit of a blanket habit so I have not one but two blankets in the works right now. One is my first try at entrelac made from Caron’s One Pound yarn and the other is a knit sampler made up of lots of squares with different stitches to try out.

IMG_20140219_225656

IMG_20140324_094011

Blankets always take a lot of time (especially if they are knit) so it is no surprise these aren’t done yet.

Something that does go faster that I recently started was a pair of socks using the Lion Brand Sockease yarn.

IMG_20140422_235634

I am flying through this but I don’t know if you have made socks before but the second one usually takes WAY longer to finish, at least for me, because I already did that pattern before why not work on something knew!

There is one project that I am working on that isn’t knitting but crochet which is my bag. The bag is a little boring to work on since it consists of a lot of rectangles you just sew together and so far I only have 2 of the rectangles done.

IMG_20140426_160544

I do want to finish this since it makes a very nice bag.

Not only do I have all of these lovely projects in the works but I also brought home a couple from my parents’ house I never finished. Hopefully I will have time to finish those projects soon!

Valentine’s Day Present for Someone Special

IMG_20140212_155634

This is the wonderful hat I made for my boy friend for Valentine’s Day. The pattern I used was called Greer (http://us.schachenmayr.com/patterns/greer) which I altered a little bit. I wanted to add in the forth color along with change the topĀ  a little bit. I ended up doing the top three times. First I tried following the patter which was just 2 rows of k2tog and then tried a little less aggressive method of decreasing. Since decreasing the hat that fast made it fit a lot smaller I had to take it out again to I could decrease 8 times a round with a row of straight knits so that it would fit on my boy friend’s head.

I personally love the colors but no one else I have shown has really shown any enthusiasm for the hat so maybe one of you will enjoy it! I am an obnoxious person and sometimes like obnoxious colors! The yarn was the same suggested in the Greer pattern, Boston by Schachenmayr (http://us.schachenmayr.com/yarns/boston).